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Eating olive oil once a week lowers risk of blood clots’

A new study has found that drizzling olive oil on your food at least once a week lowers the risk of blood clots.

Olive oil is an important part of Mediterranean diet which has long been known is associated with good heart health.

Researchers at New York University School of Medicine studied the blood of 63 obese, non-smoking adults, and found the olive oil seemed to protect blood platelets from dangerous ‘activation’ which can cause a build-up and blood clots.

The team at the New York University School of Medicine, believe that beyond containing plenty of antioxidants, it has something to do with the structure of olive oil’s molecules.

The lead author Dr Sean Heffron at New York University School of Medicine said “People who are obese are at increased risk of having a heart attack, stroke or other cardiovascular event, even if they don’t have diabetes or other obesity-associated conditions. Our study suggests that choosing to eat olive oil may have the potential to help modify that risk, potentially lowering an obese person’s threat of having a heart attack or stroke.”

Platelets are blood cell fragments that stick together and form clumps and clots when they are activated. They contribute to the buildup of artery-clogging plaque, known as atherosclerosis, the condition which underlies most heart attacks and strokes.

The study involved asking 63 obese, nonsmoking, non-diabetic individuals with an average age of 32.2 and where morbidly obese with an average BMI of 44.1.

The study found those who ate olive oil at least once a week had lower platelet activation than participants who ate it less often, and that the lowest levels of platelet aggregation were observed among those who ate olive oil more frequently.

They did not see any of these beneficial effects from red meat, eggs, butter, or margarine.

Mail Online reports that the researchers admit the findings relied on participants completing food survey questionnaires on how often they ate olive oil, but not how much olive oil they ate.

And because it was observational, the study could not prove that eating olive oil will reduce platelet activation in obese adults.

Commenting on the findings, Professor Linda Van Horn of the Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago, said: “These investigators have taken on the opportunity to compare individuals who were all overweight, but were not smoking or didn’t have diabetes or other factors that could confound these results and instead showed that those who consumed olive oil more frequently had better outcomes related to their platelets.”

Source: Daily Trust Nigeria

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